Matrix.org

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Matrix is a decentralized, open source messaging system that integrates well with IRC. It provides modern features like a web interface, easy catch-up on missed conversation (without the need to run a bouncer), read-message tracking, and end-to-end encryption (implementation in progress). It even supports voice and video calling.

Using the web browser interface[edit]

The easiest way to get started with Matrix is using the Riot web interface. To register, create a free Matrix account at https://riot.im/app/.

If you have a bouncer, be sure to disconnect it before setting up Riot/Matrix. If you are using IRCCloud, signing out is not enough. You'll need to click on the gear icon next to the "Freenode" heading in the upper-right corner, and choose "Disconnect". Otherwise, the system will think your nick is taken, and Matrix will automatically connect you using a variation on your nick.

Connecting to freenode IRC channels[edit]

Configuring your IRC nick:

  • Click the + icon in the bottom left to create a new room
  • In the dialog, click the "Create Room" button
  • In the empty room, click "Invite to this room" in the bottom right corner
  • In the "Invite new room members" dialog, enter @appservice-irc:matrix.org and click the "Send Invites" button.
  • Wait until "@appservice-irc:matrix.org joined the room." is displayed.
  • In the "Send a message" area at the bottom, enter !nick <yournick> and press the Enter key

Connect to freenode channels:

Freenode IRC channels are reachable by connecting to a channel called #freenode_#<channel>:matrix.org. For example, to connect to #mediawiki, start a matrix chat with #freenode_#mediawiki:matrix.org.

  • Click on the "Room directory" list icon in the lower left to bring up the room directory
  • In the search field, enter the entire channel you want to connect to, such as #freenode_#mediawiki:matrix.org
  • When prompted, click on the "↲Join" button at the right in the search field
  • On the "Join Room" page, click "Click here" in the "You are trying to access a room. Click here to join the discussion!" text

The riot.im web interface hides some of that, so you can instead:

  • Click on the folder icon in the lower left to bring up the room directory
  • In the dropdown on the right, choose Freenode
  • Enter some of the channel name, like mediawiki and wait for the list to populate below
  • Click on the channel in the list
  • When prompted, choose to "join" the channel
  • NOTE: Private channels will not be listed--you'll need to get someone already in the channel to invite you

Authenticating with freenode:

After connecting to a channel on freenode, you should get a chat invite from NickServ. It is displayed in the panel on the left, in the "People" section. If you don't, you can initiate a chat with NickServ by clicking on the person icon ("Start Chat") in the bottom-left) and entering: @freenode_NickServ:matrix.org. Once you are in a chat with NickServ, to sign in, accept the chat invite & type: identify <user> <password>

Appservice 0.7 also added the option to save the IRC password. This avoids the need to re-authenticate manually, which is especially useful if you frequently use private channels. To save your password, go to the chat with @appservice-irc:matrix.org, and type !storepass chat.freenode.net <yourpass>. Note: this seems to be necessary to connect to the #wikimedia-staff and certain password protected channels.

Other[edit]

If you need further help with your Freenode connection, try issuing the command !help in your chat with @appservice-irc:matrix.org. If that doesn't work, you can try asking for help in the #irc:matrix.org room, where people who maintain the IRC bridge code hang out.

Using a desktop application[edit]

  • Make sure you have already registered an account on https://riot.im/app/
  • Install the package provided by your distribution, or follow the instructions at https://github.com/taw00/riot-rpm/blob/master/README.md
  • Log into the Riot desktop application
  • Click the icon at "Search the room directory" to search for rooms
  • In the dropdown on the right, choose "Freenode"
  • In the #channel search field, enter #wikimedia-dev or such. Press the Enter key or click the "↲ Join" button, then confirm
  • See that you have joined that channel
  • To join more IRC rooms, use the "Room directory" button in the left bottom corner. You can also directly type "/join #freenode_#channelname:matrix.org" in any chat window which will skip the confirmation part
  • Via the Preferences button in the left bottom corner, under "Notifications", you want to disable "Messages in group chats" as things can get noisy
  • Changing your IRC nickname on Freenode: Start a chat via @appservice-irc:matrix.org. In the private chat, use this command: !nick yourIrcNick
  • Authenticating to Freenode's NickServ: Start a chat via @freenode_NickServ:matrix.org. Then use this command: IDENTIFY yourUsername yourPassword

Further Links[edit]